Gartner's five key predictions for the social

Market analyst and consulting firm Gartner revealed their five key predictions for social software and collaboration in the organisation today. These predictions focus on offerings ranging from team collaboration to dynamic social networking applications that offer rich profiles and activity streams. Mark R. Gilbert, research vice president at Gartner said: “Success in social software and collaboration will be characterised by a concerted and collaborative effort between IT and the business.”
The five key predictions offered up by Gartner are as follows:
  • By 2014, social networking services will replace e-mail as the primary vehicle for interpersonal communications for 20 per cent of business users.
  • By 2012, over 50 per cent of enterprises will use activity streams that include microblogging, but stand-alone enterprise microblogging will have less than 5 per cent penetration.
  • Through 2012, over 70 per cent of IT-dominated social media initiatives will fail.
  • Within five years, 70 per cent of collaboration and communications applications designed on PCs will be modelled after user experience lessons from smartphone collaboration applications.
  • Through 2015, only 25 per cent of enterprises will routinely utilise social network analysis to improve performance and productivity.
These estimates appear fairly conservative, though clearly that depends on the market you operate within. Many media types have already adopted social streams as their primary means of contact, considering email to be clunky and *so* nineties.
But just look at the failure rates. Gartner predicts over 70 per cent of enterprise projects using  social media will fail. Will companies keep investing with that kind of failure rate. What’s your call?
More information can be found in the report Predicts 2010: Social Software Is an Enterprise Reality .

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"Gartner predicts over 70 per cent of enterprise projects using social media will fail." That isn't quite what they said - they specifically refer to "IT-dominated". In other words - they predict that simply providing a technical solution without business demand is not going to work. An implication being that social media within enterprises is not at the same ubiqitous level as email and perhaps web conferencing - so simply implementing a technical solution and assuming that people will know how to use it simply won't work.